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Should I have gone to university? watch

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    Hi all

    I was always considered a highly intelligent student, receiving straight As throughout my exams. In Sixth Form however, I really lost a lot of interest in education and decided against attending university as it really didn't seem for me. I even dropped down from 4 AS Levels to 2 A2 Levels in Year 13, to the shock of my teachers and peers.

    Now I work for my family business (a private nursery school) in a key admin/finance role - they all assume it's a stop gap of sorts while I do Open University or an equivalent) which really doesn't appeal to me). I work hard and rather enjoy working there, it's not particularly demanding but I'm good at what I do there. My family aren't taken on the idea of me staying there permanently as it would be "wasting my intelligence" and I'm supposedly destined for higher things, which I'm not particularly certain or sure of.

    If I were to stay there as my career, I could expect a £45k-£50k salary (in today's money) at the peak of my earnings in my mid-late forties or so, is that respectable? How does that compare with peak career earnings of graduates?

    Should I have gone to university though? Have I wasted a chance at earning more? I've looked at some accountancy school leaver schemes which seem good, but again I don't feel fully cut out for that and they are extremely competitive.


    Honest opinions and experiences are appreciated, thanks.
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    By the way, it's not like I don't have something I want to do in life.

    I love writing and do it casually on the side (TV pilots etc) but that's near impossible to break into and do as a serious career and I'm very probably dreaming.

    I don't really know what to do in life and feel lost and worried I've made mistakes and wasted opportunities!
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    You haven't wasted the chance because you can still go.
    Personally, I think anyone who has the opportunity to go to university should go, but only if they actually want to work for it. There is nothing more frustrating than sitting in a tutorial with 19 other people and only 3 or 4 of them actually want to be there and prepare for it. Likewise when we have to do group presentations. My grade shouldn't be brought down because someone else is only at university for the lifestyle.

    I'm babbling, but what I'm basically trying to say is that you should go if you feel like you would work hard, but you say you're quite happy doing what you're doing now, so you shouldn't feel bad about sticking with that. You can always go to uni in the future if you decide you want a change in career or a higher education.
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    Thanks for your comments.

    I just feel I could never get into a great university with 2 A2 levels and 2 AS Levels (300 UCAS points)
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    You never know.
    I'm Scottish, so we have a different education system and rely on Highers to get into uni - of which I have none. Not through lack of intelligence or desire, but because I was ill throughout my secondary school experience and was pulled out of school on medical grounds at the age of 14. Here I am at uni and doing damn well if I do say so myself. If you want to go to university, you can go to university. If your grades won't grant you entry to the university you want to go to, see if they have an access course you can do or give it a few years and apply with "life experience" - that seems to be a pretty popular route now.
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    If you wanted to go then yes. Sounds like you didn't.
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    I love writing and do it casually on the side (TV pilots etc) but that's near impossible to break into and do as a serious career and I'm very probably dreaming.
    Just wanted to weight in on this point, I have a degree in film studies, I hoped I'd learn of practical skills (which I did) and be able to get work experience and internships from it. In reality, employers in the world of TV and Film don't care about degrees or people who are enthusiastic about working in film/tv, no matter what they might claim. They only want people who have a ton of experience and have worked in it for years OR are related to/know someone who works in the production company. Well, this is my personal experience anyway. Just saying this in case you were thinking of doing a creative course at uni.
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    Also, out of interest, could you progress in the company you currently work for? Since it's your family business, perhaps they would allow you to take on more responsibilities and you could work your way up.
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    (Original post by niall22)
    Also, out of interest, could you progress in the company you currently work for? Since it's your family business, perhaps they would allow you to take on more responsibilities and you could work your way up.
    Yes there's definite potential to work my way up. My grandmother will be retiring from there in a few years, meaning I can pretty much absorb her role and become the number 2 in the business, earning around 25k and it gradually increasing to the mid 30s as I go through my thirties. Then by the time I'm in my forties my mother, the number 1, will have retired and I'll be earning between 40 and 50k in today's money, then I'll inherit it and become co owner with other family members.

    Definite potential to work up.
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    If you like where you're working and there's a strong chance you'll inherit the company, then I'd say stick where you are. A degree won't be much use to you've already got a good job.
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    (Original post by niall22)
    If you like where you're working and there's a strong chance you'll inherit the company, then I'd say stick where you are. A degree won't be much use to you've already got a good job.
    Thanks for the advice.

    That's kind of the way I've been thinking for a while, but my family disagree and think I could quite easily get a 100k career by getting a degree. I'm pretty sure degree doesn't equal amazing career so easily?
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    I think easily earning 100k is unrealistic, you must hear on the news about the high rate of graduate unemployment and underemployment. Unfortunately a degree nowadays doesn't guarantee success.
 
 
 
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